ROSEBURG, Ore. - Rumors and fake social media posts related to the explosive Oregon wildfires are spreading online, prompting law enforcement agencies to attempt to set the record straight.
Multiple fires erupted earlier this week amid an unusual east wind event and hot, dry conditions.
The sudden firestorm has left many people looking for answers - and internet hoaxes appear to be finding an eager audience.
"Rumors spread just like wildfire," the Douglas County Sheriff's Office said Thursday morning, "and now our 9-1-1 dispatchers and professional staff are being overrun with requests for information and inquiries on an UNTRUE rumor that 6 Antifa members have been arrested for setting fires in DOUGLAS COUNTY, OREGON."
THIS IS NOT TRUE! Unfortunately, people are spreading this rumor and it is causing problems.
Do your part, STOP. SPREADING. RUMORS!
The Medford Police Department had to take similar action Wednesday as a screen snip fashioned to look like a post from the department's official Facebook account made the rounds online.
"This is a made up graphic and story," police said. "We did not arrest this person for arson, nor anyone affiliated with Antifa or 'Proud Boys' as we’ve heard throughout the day. Also, no confirmed gatherings of Antifa which has also been reported."
The Clackamas County Sheriff's Office said it hasn't arrested anyone for arson.
It said it is aware of the internet rumors. It encouraged people to report any criminal activity.
Oregon has set up an official wildfire resources page.
For evacuations, look to your county sheriff for accurate information. If the sheriff tells you to evacuate, you are urged to cooperate - for your safety, and the safety of firefighters working in the area.